NXTchicago headed up to Top Cheddar for its first 10v10 tournament of the season. This was their first full field tournament as a lacrosse program. NXTchicago sent its U-11 and High School team up for the weekend. Coach Sataloff said “It was a great learning experience for our boys, they saw some excellent lacrosse and some top notch teams from the mid-west area.”
NXTchicago’s U-11 team had a total of 4 games on the weekend. The boys did a great job of applying concepts and skills learned in practice to the field game. As a result the team improved throughout the tournament. In fact, the U-11 team played their best game of the tournament on the last day at their 9:00am game. Coach Peoples stated “I was proud of these guys, they stayed at it all weekend, we kept teaching as the weekend went on the players did a great job of listening and putting our plan into action. I look forward to getting back to practice and to keep working with this group.”
NXTchicago 2017/2018 team also made their debut to the 10v10 field this weekend and had a great learning experience as they grew as a team. The team is still learning how to best combine their individual skills into team strengths as they just finalized their roster on Oct 12th. They had great individual play from players such as a break out performance from 2017 Will Pingry at the midfield. Will started to find his role in the offense as the weekend went on as he continued to achieve success via dodging from up top. 2017 graduate Joey Hansen also had a fantastic weekend as he dominated his attackman. His aggressive style of play and hard nose defensive attitude was a tone setter for the NXTchicago defense. This young group of players showed a lot of promise and is starting to show signs of greatness. Next up for this team is a trip to Detroit Country Day School for the Can-Am showcase.
The program got a bit closer on Saturday night, both teams returned to the team hotel where they had a pizza party with player introductions. After dinner there was a Trashcan tournament, where the high school players teamed up with the U-11 players to form teams. After the Trashcan tournament many players took in a rare opportunity to watch a beagle dog show that was also being hosted at the team hotel.
NXTchicago is back at practice this Sunday night at The Dome in Rosemont. Both teams have come along ways and are starting to play some great team lacrosse. This fall the boys will be asked to continue with their individual skill development and to keep pushing themselves as individuals as they get introduced to more sets and nuances of team offense and defense. We look forward to keeping this process in motion and are excited to see how the high school boys compete at the Can-Am tournament this Nov 9.
The NXT Lacrosse Chicago U-11 team spiced it up this past weekend as they headed out to Naperville for a youth “Play Day.” The day included a morning scrimmage, a King of the Can Tournament and concluded with a family picnic. Big thanks to New Wave for hosting a great day of lacrosse.
The morning scrimmage ended with a score of 8-7 in favor of New Wave. The NXT Lacrosse team played a hard fought game and every player left it all on the field. That is all the coaching staff can ask of their boys. The area where the U-11 team improved the most was in the riding and clearing game as they looked and acted much more confident and composed while clearing. With this young group the coaching staff harps on keeping proper spacing and understanding on how to move off ball. The offense started to really improve in these areas and was a big reason for many of the goals scored on Sunday.
The high school team was back at practice on Sunday night and the boys covered man up and man down situations as they continue to develop and push themselves. The high schoolers have done a great job coming ready to practice and the way they compete against one another is a staple to any great practice environment. The boys and coaching staff will continue to push one another in order to reach their maximum potential. The next stop on the schedule is Top Cheddar as this will be their first full field tournament. The team is looking forward to Oct. 18-19 in Milwaukee, WI, for a chance to compete against other competition. This will be a great test for the boys and one they are looking forward to.
The U-15 group had a great practice Sunday night as well as they hosted a few new players. They continue to grow together as a team. New arrival Sam Diperte made his presence felt as he found the back of the net time and time again. The most impressive part of the U-15 group was after practice ended Sam Madura, Jack and Lucas Bear stayed after shooting and fine-tuning their games with Coach Ambler and Coach Pfeffer. The U-15 coaching staff has done an excellent job teaching and showing their players the way the game should be played and the tempo it needs to be played with. It is awesome to see multiple players staying after practice to get better and having fun doing it. When talking with Coach Pfeffer about his team “It is great to have players that have the lacrosse bug. Sometimes at the youth level it is treated more like a semi-pro team and at the end of the day I just want my players to be developing and having a great time in the process.” Great work to the U-15 team, as they continue to grow and develop this will be a very interesting team to keep an eye on.
This past weekend on September 27th 2014, NXT Lacrosse Chicago kicked off their year-round club season at the 7v7 Shootout in Vernon Hills, IL in support of the Leahy Foundation. NXT brought their U-11, U-15 and 2017/2018 teams up to compete in this fall shootout. The weekend proved to be perfect for a lacrosse tournament. Colin Ambler, regional director of NXT Chicago, stated “it was great to have all the boys from the three teams together at the same location. There is something special about having the younger players watch the high school players and build relationships at the tailgate site. We had a great tournament and will be back next year!”
The NXT LACROSSE 2017/ 2018 team brought home the Championship trophy in their first event together. They certainly did not pick the easiest path as they started the day with an 0-2 record. As the day progressed and the players grew more and more comfortable with playing with one another, their team play greatly improved and the players started to run on all cylinders. The day was led by Freshman Midfielder Jacob Griffin who won MVP honors on the day. Jacobs’s dominant midfield play was a huge factor in the day’s outcome. Jacob was not alone as Myles Leyden and Ryan “The Fever” Lefebvre led the team in goals on the day. Both players moved well off the ball and gave fits to opposing team defenses. To refer to the old adage -- defense wins championships -- and this was never more true, led by Max Sobota and Joey Hansen who wreaked havoc on the defensive end and helped push transition. All and all this was a great building block for a young group of emerging players and a tournament that they will continue to build from. Great job to the high schools boys! That’s NXT!
NXT Lacrosse U-15 finished the day with a 2-2 record, falling in the semifinals to the New Wave Shock 2. During pool play the team started the day with a five-goal deficit but rallied to outscore opponents over the next two games by a 13-3 margin. The scoring flurry was led by outside sniper Lucas Bear and savvy attack play from Sam DeVito, Jack Bear. The game tempo was set by gutsy midfield play from Max Rudolph, Nick Eckelberry and Sam Madura. The defensive end was anchored by outstanding goalie play from Nick Deckard. Nick was well protected by a high pressure defense led by Graham “The Ram” Spindler and Mike Matuszewski who gave the opposing attack fits and held two teams to a combined 3 goals in 2 games. The team ended their day after facing New Wave Shock 2 who came ready to play after losing to our boys in the final game of pool play. They had excellent goalie play and their offense was efficient and effective from start to finish. Onward and upward with the U-15s who have made great steps as a newly established team. The future is bright and this hard working group is just starting to scratch its potential.
NXT Lacrosse U-11 improved noticeably over the course of the tournament. Many players participated in their first ever lacrosse tournament, the 7v7 style of play was a perfect fit to allow these young guns to play in space and score goals. The strong point of this team was playing solid team defense. Offensively the boys kept improving and ball movement increased as the day progressed. Tournament game balls went to Offensive Player of the Day Nolan Harms for playing with his head up, being assertive on clears and trusting teammates as he continued to find and move the ball to the open man. The Defensive Player of the Day went to Thomas Frendreiss for having a constant motor, shutting down the opponent's best offensive threat and sliding with the body, although not always approved of by the refereeing crew. Great job to the youngest NXT Lacrosse Chicago team as they played hard and with style in typical U-11 fashion.
In conclusion, we are very proud of the NXT boys; they fought hard from top to bottom and played great team lacrosse. It was a great sign to see the teams improve as the day went on. In quoting J.J Watt “Success is not owned, it is rented, and rent is due every day.” This quote resonated with the boys of this program and they logged in a great practice Sunday night. Great things are ahead for this program and much work will be devoted by players and coaches to build the foundation of success in Chicago!